silver bullets

Discussion in 'Ethics and Philosophy' started by jnanian, Jan 9, 2011.

  1. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    we all chase down equipment and everything else ...

    is there any such thing as a silver bullet, and if there is, what is it ?
     
  2. Rick A

    Rick A Subscriber

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    Experience and good notes.
     
  3. bobwysiwyg

    bobwysiwyg Subscriber

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    Some folks have shot great photos with Holgas and pinholes, but most, I think, would like something or anything with a little more control. Once having acquired that, it's the photographer not the equipment. My opinion only of course.
     
  4. Vaughn

    Vaughn Subscriber

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    I'll agree with that and toss in some luck and common sense.

    BTW...I define luck as being open to, and aware of, all the possibilities happening around you.
     
  5. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Subscriber

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    “Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity.”

    Seneca (Roman philosopher, mid-1st century AD)


    Steve.
     
  6. Sanjay Sen

    Sanjay Sen Member

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    Yes, it's the camera and lens that I don't have, the ones that will make me a better photographer! :tongue:
     
  7. benjiboy

    benjiboy Subscriber

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    Silver Bullets are for vampires John, I found to my cost many years ago that photography isn't a problem that can be solved by throwing money at it with more and more expensive equipment, I found the way to improve your work is the way you would improve your playing of a musical instrument, by taking classes, seminars, study and practice.
     
  8. fschifano

    fschifano Member

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    I must respectfully disagree with the part about taking classes. Practice, yes; but if you don't have an eye for composition, no amount of study will help you. The technical stuff isn't that hard to figure out on your own.
     
  9. Maris

    Maris Member

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    My silver bullet is 8x10 film contacted on gelatin-silver paper.

    If the sins of out-of-focus, under-exposure, and under-development are avoided even very approximate use will yield tone, gradation, and detail that the eye can't fault. The system is so forgiving it's seductive.
     
  10. eddym

    eddym Member

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    You'd have to ask the Lone Ranger, and I think he's dead.
     
  11. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Subscriber

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    I agree. And actually performing is ten times better than practicing.


    Steve.
     
  12. Soeren

    Soeren Member

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    I respectfully don't :smile:
    I took some classes/cources/workshops years back and that really boosted my interest and motivation. It got me to think out of the box and took me out of my comfortzone more than once. No amount of reading, photoclub membership or practicing ever tought me as much as I learned back then and I have experienced more than one fellow photographer stuck because they refuse to do "specified asignments" (dont know the right word for those task you get in a photoclub or workshop) but rather stick with the types of subjects they are used to prhotographed like they always have done it.
    Best regards
     
  13. Whiteymorange

    Whiteymorange Member

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    Keeping it respectful: I am biased, having spent my life as a teacher, but trying to do everything through book learning and practice is a surefire way to amplify your own thoughts and tendencies. You can get a lot better through this method, but you will not get the benefit of an independent and practiced eye reviewing your methods and procedures. You need to take everything a teacher says with a certain skepticism, but the idea of collaborative learning with another experienced artist/teacher is a very valuable experience .
     
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  15. benjiboy

    benjiboy Subscriber

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    The Lone Ranger is indeed dead, Tonto shot him when he discovered that his name Tonto meant fool in Spanish :smile:
     
  16. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Subscriber

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    It's not really possible to make a definitive statement on this as people differ in the way they like to learn. Personally, I don't like formal lessons and don't like being told what to do. I have taught myself to play guitar, mandolin, ukulele and banjo by this method and to a lesser extent, taught myself to speak French.

    Other people learn really well from formal lessons and neither way is right or wrong.

    Still using the music example, I consider a live gig to be easily worth ten practice sessions to learn how things go. If I had my way I would only play live and never practice. Not quite knowing how a song goes as you launch into it is a great way of learning it really quickly!.... Again, this is just my personal view.


    Steve.
     
  17. benjiboy

    benjiboy Subscriber

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    Steve, I appreciate that for yourself you prefer to teach yourself, but I consider to advocate this method of education to people in general to be misguided I would hate to have somebody with your attitude to formal teaching and learning performing surgery on me or members my family, or calculating the structural stress factors on a bridge we were driving over.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 10, 2011
  18. Steve Smith

    Steve Smith Subscriber

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    So would I.

    But we're not talking about those sort of life critical applications here. Our discussions are about artistic choices in photography (and music). Not the end of the world if you make a bad print (or play a wrong note).


    Steve.
     
  19. Wayne

    Wayne Subscriber

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    Young naked women works for a lot of people, though some people can ruin even that.
     
  20. michael_r

    michael_r Subscriber

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    Work your butt off under the enlarger.
     
  21. jnanian

    jnanian Advertiser Advertiser

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    practice, notes, doing, learning, mentoring all these things can and will
    make someone better at certain things, and of course the excalibur of cameras
    doesn't hurt :smile:

    but is there something, more than these things that makes great image making ?
    i mean, one can make perfect exposures, process the film perfectly, and make a perfect 20x24 image,
    but if there is nothing-there ...

    how do we know there is something there or it doesn't matter ?
     
  22. benjiboy

    benjiboy Subscriber

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    One thing that I found to my cost earlier in my photography many years ago is that buying more and more expensive equipment isn't the answer, because once you own the best that money can buy and your work is still crap you have no excuses, and where do you go from there ?
     
  23. michaelbsc

    michaelbsc Member

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    Blame the film.
     
  24. Greg Davis

    Greg Davis Member

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    People chasing after the perfect lens, film, paper, formula, etc. to make their photographs great are trying to ignore the underlying truth that they have no talent or vision. That's not to say that trying new stuff isn't fun or valuable, but it isn't a substitute for the latter two.
     
  25. Andrew Moxom

    Andrew Moxom Member

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    My take is that you find the tools that work for you, and that allow you to express your vision, and work with them until they are honed and their use becomes second nature. To some (myself included) this has been at quite some cost along the way to find the right outfit that works for you. Be it large format, a Hasselblad, a Holga, a pinhole camera, adapting a funky lens to a camera, or whatever you use to demonstrate your vision. Familiarity, and knowing what its capable of and learning to truly see are where successful images are made.

    I took a workshop with Fay Godwin back in the UK during the early 90's. After seeing her low-tech approach and sticking with familiar 'tools' so that nothing gets in the way was drummed home to me. It changed how I viewed image making forever. I only use one or two films and one developer anymore...... Simplicity and knowing how to use all the tools together is key.

    If you have too many choices though, it just gets in the way.
     
  26. michaelbsc

    michaelbsc Member

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    As for choices, my father in law sold men\'s clothing for a living.



    He said the secret to selling a man a shirt was offer him two shirts.



    The store stocked probably 10-12 labels from top to bottom.



    When someone walked in you look at him and size up the situation, then offer him an inexpensive shirt and an expensive shirt that most likely in his range. But offer him too many choices and he just leaves in confusion.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 10, 2011